Former World No. 1 Andy Roddick lauded Novak Djokovic for entering ‘vintage Novak’ mode in his Rome final win against Stefanos Tsitsipas on Sunday.
Novak Djokovic defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-0 7-6(5) in an hour and 36 minutes to win his first title of the year. In the second set, the world No. 1 was down 2-5 before mounting an amazing comeback to capture his 38th Masters 1000 championship and sixth in Rome.
Novak Djokovic and Tsitsipas were meeting for the sixth time, and the first since the Greek squandered a two-set lead in last year’s French Open final, allowing the world No. 1 to win his 19th Grand Slam trophy. Tsitsipas had never beaten the Serb on clay before, and the Serb took his time winning the Italian Open.
“It looks like he is pushing. He is not, he is finding the pattern he wants to get into” – Andy Roddick
Andy Roddick said on Tennis Channel Live that Novak Djokovic’s ability to control his faults, particularly in tiebreaks, is unrivalled. He said, “The second-set tiebreaker was vintage Novak. He’s able to lock down the errors, maybe better than anyone I have seen in the history of the game. Playing safe, but still moving the ball around, getting the patterns he wants. When the pressure mounts, being able to get your pattern is important. He does that as well as anyone.”
“Why I appreciate the Big 3, winning matches you are supposed to win all the time is difficult with that pressure, and he just went through it again. The second serve was tight. Was barely getting above.70 miles an hour in the second-set tiebreaker, but he went into lockdown mode, “ he added.
The One-time Grand Slam champion concluded by saying, “It looks like he is pushing. He is not. He is finding the pattern he wants to get into and does it as well as anyone.”